The F1 thread

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Raid
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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Mon Sep 07, 2020 5:00 pm

So with an odd number of races this year, we're technically past the half way point, and you'd be forgiven if you'd tuned out by now given that it's painfully obvious that nobody can match Lewis Hamilton for yet another season. Still, every now and then the sport throws a curve ball, and that's what this year's Italian GP was. None of the usually dominant three on the podium, a brand new winner and another step back towards the front for one of the sport's most famous teams.

I was one of the people calling for Gasly to be replaced at Red Bull last year, and why shouldn't I have been - he had an absolutely dismal run against teammate Verstappen in a car that was capable of regular podiums (9 in total, 3 of which were wins). Since then though he's shown that it wasn't necessarily his own talent that was lacking, finishing the year claiming Toro Rosso's first podium in 11 years. This year he's been even better; the likes of Lewis and Max may be the ones getting all of the headlines, but there's some serious talent in the midfield at the minute that deserves more. Even Lance Stroll who I've been very critical of in the past is showing fantastic racecraft in places, and Carlos Sainz has demonstrated that he's ready for a top team. Having all three together on the podium yesterday was a real treat. Stroll did get a little lucky with the red flags allowing him to make effectively a free pit stop, but McLaren were genuinely the second fastest team this weekend.

It wasn't the best race ever, but it was a shot in the arm during a dreary season.

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DjchunKfunK
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Re: The F1 thread

Post by DjchunKfunK » Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:36 am

It's nice when other people win races but it all feels rather artificial when it happens like this and gives people an excuse to ignore the deep seated issues within the sport around competitiveness. I feel bad for Sainz as he probably would have won without the red flag and although Gaisly did well to stay ahead it was another example of how difficult it is to pass an F1 car.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Drarok » Tue Sep 08, 2020 9:14 am

I feel bad for Sainz getting a taste of the podium when he's looking at driving a piece of shit Ferrari next year.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Tue Sep 08, 2020 12:06 pm

I agree with the comments of it feeling artificial, but I can't say it bothers me that much. Don't forget that Bottas didn't have any issues, he just wasn't able to pass in a Mercedes, so although Hamilton and Verstappen were removed from their usual spots,I think that the podium sitters were there partially on merit.

I would have preferred Sainz on the top step; he's been my standout driver of the year, and I agree that he must be feeling pretty crap about his move to Ferrari.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by DjchunKfunK » Tue Sep 08, 2020 1:56 pm

Don't forget that Bottas didn't have any issues
Well that's because Bottas is rubbish when not out in front. ¬_¬

Him not being able to make much headway despite a superior car just highlights again the issues around overtaking.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Tue Sep 08, 2020 4:07 pm

While overtaking is obviously a major issue in F1, the other cars around Bottas were still getting some great moves in. I don't think I remember seeing Valteri doing anything of note all race long, besides going backwards at the start. I do wonder whether the Merc was having overheating issues, as Bottas seemed to be pulling into clean air far earlier than most cars; I suppose that could have been compromising his performance, but it was a pitiful showing from him.

I don't particularly rate Bottas for a frontrunning team; he's a solid driver and obviously quick in qualifying, but he just doesn't seem to have the aggression in races that his main rivals do.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Wed Sep 09, 2020 7:29 pm

Perez has announced that he's leaving Racing Point as it becomes Aston Martin.

https://www.racefans.net/2020/09/09/per ... ing-point/

I shouldn't be surprised really, but it's a little sad. Perez has long been one of my favourite drivers in the midfield, and he doesn't have a great many options for staying in F1. There are seats at Red Bull and Alpha Tauri, but I'd be surprised to see him land there, and other than that there's just Alfa Romeo and Haas, neither of which would be great choices based on their current performance.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Drarok » Wed Sep 09, 2020 8:48 pm

Huh.
However the arrival of four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel on the driver market for next year prompted speculation [Tracing Point] would try to make room for the Ferrari driver in its line-up. As the team’s other car is driven by Lance Stroll, the son of co-owner Lawrence Stroll, doubt has surrounded Perez’s future for several months.
I dunno, that doesn't seem to track for me. I can't see Vettel demoting himself from the "top" team to effectively the Mercedes B team. They are more likely to secure a win, though...

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Wed Sep 09, 2020 9:13 pm

It all depends on how much Vettel wants to remain in F1, and I suppose whether Aston Martin can go forwards based on what they've managed this year or whether they'll go backwards into the midfield again. If he'd made that move this year, it would have been a huge improvement.

Perez had a three year contract that he signed last year. There's been absolutely no indication of bad relations within the team, so he's been bought out of that contract. I really can't see the team doing that for another midfield driver, it surely has to be Vettel.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Drarok » Wed Sep 09, 2020 9:54 pm

I guess? Vettel just strikes me as a man who's had enough. 4-time WDC, recently had another kid... I'd want to stay at home!

I mean, I'd forgotten that Alonso is coming back to drive for Renault of all teams. Raikkonen seems like he just loves driving, regardless how shit the car is. So long as he gets into at least one little scrap I don't see him ever leaving unless he's made to!

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Rossell » Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:14 am


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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:33 am

I guess now we see whether Vettel's weariness was down to the environment at Ferrari or the sport in general. I suspect it's more the former than the latter.

I like Vettel as a personality, he's honest and a bit mischievous, but I've always had this asterisk at the back of my mind over his racing ability, which unfortunately has been getting larger over the last three or four years. His four championships looked remarkably easy, and I don't think he ever had that same level of dominance at Ferrari, suggesting that a large part of winning those titles was the car. I just don't view him in the same light that I view Alonso or Hamilton. He's now moving to a team that is unlikely to be challenging regularly for race wins, and so he'll be mixed in with the rest of the pack, and we're going to see whether he's as good as he really ought to be. I *want* to get rid of that asterisk, and I look forward to seeing if I can.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by DjchunKfunK » Thu Sep 10, 2020 9:51 am

Vettel was making mistakes when things were going OK at Ferrari so I don't think his performances can be laid at the door of Ferrari. I think he is a good driver but one that can't wrestle more out of a car like Alonso or Hamilton can. If you give him a poor car he will drive poorly and if you give him a good car he will drive well.

Perez is a decent driver but I think he has taken seats off better drivers over the years because of his financial backing, so I wouldn't be sad to see him go.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Drarok » Thu Sep 10, 2020 10:47 am

I'd much rather see other drivers go than Perez! Grosjean immediately comes to mind. Alonso and Raikkonen should probably retire rather than taking seats that up-and-coming drivers could have instead, too.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Wrathbone » Thu Sep 10, 2020 11:03 am

I can vaguely imagine how Vettel might want to do another year in F1 without the shadow of his Ferrari decline hanging over his retirement. He's not going to win races next year, but maybe he can regain some dignity. Regarding his ability, he's more of a driver than a racer, capable of putting in a good lap but increasingly hopeless when going wheel to wheel. That was hardly ever an issue for him at Red Bull because he was so far in front most races, and whenever Webber gave him a challenge it was always volatile.

Alonso on the other hand... I don't understand his mentality at all. The chip on his shoulder has a chip on its shoulder, and the only reason for him to continue in F1 is if he can win the third championship he's always thought he deserved. And Renault is who he's signing with?! His long history with the team notwithstanding, it's a waste of time for him. What's he hoping to achieve, other than creating another Scrooge McDuck pool of gold?

Maybe Renault have some very persuasive people talking to drivers, because Ricciardo left Red Bull for them supposedly on the basis that they had some upcoming competetive edge. Have they somehow convinced Alonso that they could be competetive with the rule changes in 2022?

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